Telehealth continues to provide office visits, consultations, and other medical services using a telecommunications system. By using this system, it allows the physician to monitor and evaluate the patient remotely. Certain telehealth services can stay covered by Medicare Part B.
An example of telehealth technology is using an electrocardiogram, also known as ECG or EKG, which helps measure the heart’s activity. The ECG can give doctors feedback on a patient’s heart condition by looking for specific patterns, like irregular heart rhythms. Other examples of telehealth technology include setting up virtual appointments, reviewing test results through an online portal, or additional remote monitoring.
The idea of telehealth services is to help medical services be more accessible to those who live a long distance from their primary care doctor, have limited mobility and transportation, have better access to specialists, and develop better communication between the doctor and patient. Overall, using telehealth can give you the services and healthcare you need remotely.
What is telemedicine?
While telehealth and telemedicine remain used interchangeably, the two are different. Telehealth covers more of a large spectrum, referring to all services issued through the telecommunications system. Telemedicine covers more specific clinical services, such as the cold or flu.
Telemedicine provides clinical services remotely to patients, which can happen given through video consultations between the doctor and the patient. It also refers to medical diagnoses and evaluations that transpire done remotely.
To deliver these clinical services while doing so remotely, they offer three types of telemedicine:
- Store-and-Forward: This type of telemedicine gives the primary physician, specialist, and patient a way to effectively communicate medical information, such as lab reports or other important information.
- Remote Patient Monitoring: Also known as telemonitoring, remote patient monitoring gives doctors and specialists the data they need by tracking a patient’s vitals.
- Real-time Telemedicine: This type can take the place of in-person visits by substituting them with video visits.
What does Medicare Part B cover?
The Medicare Part B deductible will apply, but you’ll also continue to expect to pay for 20% of the Medicare-approved amount, which can be e determined by your doctor’s services. However, you’ll usually pay the same amount as whatever you would if you received the same services in person. Medicare will also cover virtual check-ins, visits, and all ordered x-rays and lab tests.
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